Sunday, August 28, 2011

The first week of school and goodbyes...

So good bye carefree summer and now onto a new school year. So far so good...Monday was our last day without school. I have committed to watch my dad on Monday mornings so my mom can get stuff done. She actually had a dentist check up that morning. Timo had to work, he actually worked an extra hour. Then he and some friends did a ping pong tournament in a cul-de-sac, he won, the stinker! Emily had to watch the little boys and they sold snacks (they did a little a couple Saturdays ago but haven't had time since). Gwen had pre-Irish dance. She started a couple of weeks ago but I think I didn't mention it although I did put a photo of her in her uniform last week. She is enjoying it and doing well--it helps that her buddy Zoe is there! I really wanted to do something fun this last day but it had to wait until family night. We had meet the teacher at the elementary school, dinner with special Choco Taco ice cream treats. We went to the 'duck pond' Park behind the high school. I should've brought more bread they were starving.

It was a lot of fun and still left us enough time for Tim to give the younger kids a Father's blessing. He had done the 4 oldest Sunday night.

Tuesday was our first day of school for all the kids but Taran.

Gwen is still in preschool but she actually started that day too, which was nice. I took her and then her friend Luke's mom, Tricia, picked them up and she stayed the day. All the kids seemed to like their classes that first day. Meanwhile I went to the temple, went shopping, exercised and did stuff for scouts. Taran worked a full day then started packing his stuff into the big van. Tim helped him take out the van benches so they could try to fit his roommate Scott's big screen TV in it--didn't fit! So we helped him pack his stuff in after the kids were in bed. Because it was Taran's 'last night' with us I made salmon and a special dinner. Unfortunately we didn't all eat together since Micah had soccer practice at 4 PM until 5:30 PM he ate and then we ran to Pack Meeting. Izak had soccer practice 5-6:30 PM!
Timo had 'Junior Jam at a park they painted each other and had food starting at 5 PM. So much for some last family togetherness! He liked dinner and we got him ready to move out!
Wednesday Gwen had preschool again but we didn't do any playdate that day. I mowed while she was gone. Tim drove the van to work with all of Taran's stuff. Then at lunch he went to my mom's where he met up with Taran. He took him to his apartment/dorm from there. They got his computer (he is renting one), books and his all-sports pass. Then Tim came home. We went to Walmart and got some things he needed power strip, flash drive...then took those and some food that needed to stay refrigerated until we could get it to him (butter, cheese, eggs...) I got a photo of him with 2 of his roommates Nic and Austin from Springville, Utah. He has one from Oregon and one from Brigham City, Utah...of course Scott is from Cedar Hills. After Tim got the computer set up we went to the Creamery for ice cream and to buy some milk. Then we said good bye. I got teary of course but Gwen, Izak and Emily cried, a lot. Taran had some internet problems so Tim went back up to the dorm while I got to stay with the sobbing Gwen and other sad kids. Timo tried to reason with them--we'll see him soon, he's not that far away...Nice try. Life isn't going to be the same. Not that I don't want him to grow up and do the good things he's doing, but it is the truth, it's never the same.

Thursday I drove to preschool and Luke came home until the afternoon. I worked on moving Izak into Taran's room. I also took them to feed the ducks after lunch and then they played on the playground and sand.
Gwen is enjoying having a friend over. It was back to school night for the elementary school and Gwen had her first soccer practice. Timo took her so I could finish dinner. Tim had to take Taran his cell phone charger and a couple of other things that he forgot--I imagine we will do this a lot until he gets it all there! i had taken Micah to a friend's luckily his mom said that she could get him home if needed. Timo had also decided to ask a girl in our neighborhood to Homecoming so he was wanting help with that. I went to back to school night later than I would have liked but owell! I was just lucky Micah and Izak didn't have their normal soccer practices that night anymore! Several friends stopped to talk and ask how we were doing having sent Taran off.

Friday Gwen and I went to watch my niece Anna's baby, June. She is a cutie! I offered to watch her on Friday mornings so she could have a break. I remember how helpful that was for me as a new mom. We enjoyed it! Then we met my mom for lunch. She was getting a break herself from a friend, who is like a sister, took my dad up to Mirror Lake. She wanted to go to lunch so we went out. Meanwhile drama was brewing at the junior high and hopefully this weekend gave it a rest so we can move on! I can't go into detail but to say Why can we all just get along??? My mom had brought her portable fire pit and roasting sticks so we did hot dogs and s'mores. It was the father and sons camp out but Zane had soccer practice at 5:30 PM until 6:30 PM and the place was an hour away. Zane's game was 8:30 AM in the morning so Tim decided to stay home so I got creative. It was fun and they played SNORTA until it was time for bed. Meanwhile Timo had gone to the football game the girl replied to him, yes, with spoons and a pie! Fun times. Unfortunately I didn't take a photo of anything!

Saturday we had forgot to set the alarm to get Emily at 5:30 AM to be at church by 6 was 6:45 AM and they hadn't left! I am not sure what happened but it was a blessing! She had packed the night before so she was ready in a minute to go! They went to Manti to do baptism for the dead. One of the leaders her parents are the Pinegars (MTC) now serve in the temple as President and Matron. (Also this is Luke Gwen's friend'd grandparents). They had a great experience.
The 4 youngest had soccer games each and the ones I took won! Izak refereed after his game with a friend. We did our chores then and finally finished at dinner time! We also finished getting Izak moved out--I think!:) He's enjoyed being down there. Zane and Micah got to have a movie because they got done in time and were nice--the others went to bed. Emily babysat while we went on a date. She was very tired! She did watch Ironman with Tim before going to bed. Timo hung with his friends.

Today Timo had to be up early to get to the Developmental Center to help with church there. Tim and I went to Orem for missionary farewell for our good friends the Warrens. Ron and Tim were best friends in high school. Tim goes to lunch with him but we haven't seen their kids in awhile. He did a great job and will be a great missionary in Jacksonville Florida--Spanish. We got back just in time for our ward's sacrament meeting. I taught my class today, it was on the Crucifixion. All I can say is I did better than I did the week I taught about Gethsemane. Hopefully I am not too distracting but it is such a tender thing for me. I tried to show a video I found and downloadedfrom here. Watch it, it's simple and good! But I couldn't find it on Tim's computer. Taran got ordained an Elder today. We didn't find out for sure until last night so we didn't tell everyone in the family. It was still nice. Taran ate with us then Tim took him and Scott back. As I wrote before it is different now, he seems different already. It was still nice to have him here that's not different. He just seemed more grown up!
Gwen made this yesterday when she was suppose to be cleaning--clever! Her temple!:)

Timo and Emily had a stake fireside at 5 PM so they didn't get to eat until after it. Timo just taught on the atonement why it was necessary. He is preparing to teach a man who is getting re-baptized in a couple of weeks. Taran and his friend already did it last week. They loved it! What a great opportunity for them to feel that spirit of missionary work in their life hopefully they will continue to desire to serve. Taran has already started on his papers for his mission--they fill info online and the bishop said that he could go ahead and do that. He can be done and turn them in in December! Crazy! His friend Tyler is suppose to get his call Tuesday so Taran will be back up here for that!

Have a great week! The last week of August! Fall is coming!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Last weeks of summer...

Well, here we are on the threshold of new beginnings. Always a bag of mixed emotions. Excited to start anew and see my kids developing their talents and skills with new teachers and friends, weary of the pure exhaustion I sometimes feel from the challenges of a large family that is involved in many things--the logistics! Taran starts college a week from tomorrow, tears have fallen from parents to siblings and even himself has he realizes he moves out this week. We've had a fun summer but still I will miss the carefree-ness of it!

We went to Taran's 'work' for FHE a couple of weeks ago--the photos in the collage of the kids by a pond, in a park area, stone wall and waterfall. My parents came--dad sat in the van we parked next to the area. He gets tired just getting in and out of the van. BYU has re-landscaped the south campus and that is where Taran works. It is just beautiful! I could tell he is proud of what he has done this summer.

We let the kids have late nights with friends over these last 2 weeks but I only remembered to take a picture of Izak's. They all had a lot of fun.

We visited Seven Peaks one Saturday morning and Erin our niece met up with us there. Timo and Izak each brought friends. We had a lot of fun until it got crowded. Tim took off last Thursday and we went again and Izak brought a friend. Emily went with her friend Ashley.

It was free swim at Teresa's pool Tuesday so we went there this week and played with the Louw cousins. We got snowcones since it was our last time.

Last Sunday Erin brought us fun stuff from China! We had a nice visit with her and Tim's parents. See the photos of Gwen (and Micah) with the Chinese Princess headband/crown.
Last week the little kids watched Rango and seemed to like it. I also thought it was weird. But Tim and I watched Soul Surfer and loved it.

This week our leaders had challenged us to do service as a family (remember Pres. Eyring's talk). They planned service as a ward this Saturday. We helped our neighbors pack on Monday--they are moving to Texas. Emily took the younger kids and played with them while we older people packed and moved stuff upstairs to their garage. They have a 2 year old so it makes it hard to get too much done when she isn't occupied! She is darling and we will miss their family! We also planned a casual gathering for them to say good bye and took them dinner their last night. I was also able to go to the temple this week. Last week Tim and I went for our ward temple night and that was a neat experience. A member of the temple Presidency spoke to us and was impressed with how many came out--he commented that they have stake nights with less. We have a unique ward, that is for sure! He pronounced a blessing on us which was really neat as well. Yesterday the men helped in the yards of 2 neighbors in need, Timo and the YM helped as well. Emily cleaned a widows windows. I was teaching a merit badge class for our stake so Taran had the little people. Micah had a scrimmage for soccer so Taran drove him and took Gwen and Zane along. Izak was with me. So we got a lot of service in this week!

I got to stay with my dad some Friday, my mom needed to go back to Idaho. My sister spent the night but I did the day shift. I had great time. While he rested I was able to finalize my merit badge class stuff. Tim took the day off as well and took the kids to Trafalga (part of the 7 Peaks pass) and some friends. They had a lot of fun. When they got back the 3 boys found out who their teacher and classmates will be this year. Zane is the only one disappointed. I am a little concerned about his teacher and if he doesn't seem to be progressing I may have to pull him. We watched (or Tim mostly) our friends' kids while they went out for their anniversary. Their 4 are the ages of our last four. They watched Mars Needs Moms. It seemed kind of weird what I saw. I do love the book though. Not sure if they liked it or not. Later I gave blood which has made me much more tired than I remember feeling the last time I did it!

Tim and I had fun going out to dinner with our college friends the Eddingtons. Other friends were suppose to make it but alas life got in the way and they did not make it! Maybe next time! We almost didn't make it because all our older kids had obligations Taran went with friends to the Goo Goo Dolls/ Parachute concert in Park City, Timo had dodgeball tournament and Emily had a soccer referee class to attend. Our saintly neighbors helped out and watched Micah, Zane and Gwen until Timo could get them!

Yesterday after service I ran errands and then Tim and I took Emily and the younger kids to see the Winnie the Pooh Movie at the almost dollar movies ($3). It was really cute but I had a hard time staying awake. We got Wendy's and went home to eat. It was a fun last hurrah! Taran packed for college and played soccer with some of our kids and his friends. He was melancholy and his friend Kenzie brought him brownies. We watched America's Funniest Home Videos with him--when he was home to ever do that I don't remember! Feeling the change! Timo wanted to go to the stake dance but he couldn't convince his friend so they sat on our porch and talked instead! He went to the Lone Peak football the night before and had a lot of fun. He has been working on homework that is due when school starts--Tim is outraged!

So now I best get ready for church! Taran will become an elder next Sunday. So strange but also seems right how they progress and grow up! Have a great week! I'll try to breathe deeply!:)

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Summer fun and school clothes shopping....

Like this photo of strawberries from our garden? We have quite the patch now and this is the 4th or 5th batch we've gotten! Yummy! So Monday I went and stayed with my dad so my mom could do some errands. I couldn't go until Timo got back with the van. The guy who is fixing the kid van is waiting for a part! We hope it's done before school starts! It was nice to visit with my dad. I also read while he was sleeping which I rarely get to do at my house these days! Taran ordered his All Sports Pass for BYU! One step closer to the college experience! That night we splurged and went out to dinner for family night at the local pizza buffet. The older kids have been but not the rest of us--we don't have the same disposable income as them! Tim had won a $25 gift card from Discover so it paid for half of our bill--that is why we don't eat out much! Afterward we went on a walk through the path that lines the neighborhood--we picked up trash and settled our overstuffed tummies!

Tuesday Timo drove again so I was without a car again until noon. Then I went to the temple which was practically empty. I did run into a friend Brenda Warren whose son was going through the temple for his first time before he goes on his mission. He just graduated like Taran but has a late birthday so he is going into the MTC in September. I came home for a little bit and went grocery shopping after then I picked up Micah and his friend from soccer practice after. Tim had softball that night and Gwen and I had a good-bye party for her Primary teacher and her daughter who was in my Primary class (and the rest of the family). It was a milkshake bar--yummy!

Wednesday I still did not have a car until noon again. I had scouts that night so I did some prep for that. The three oldest had a combined young women and young mens which was a lot of fun. Tim held down the fort while I did scouts: Tenderfoot fitness test at the REC Center. I let the boys swim after for fun since we paid to get in anyway. Izak and some friends who are also in my scouts had the Photography merit badge class at the rec center before so I met them there. He's had a lot of fun taking pictures of friends and things!


we did a Pass of All Passes Day! Our 7 Peaks Pass in the morning, Trafalga after lunch go karts, mini-golf and motion ride! Then an Orem Owlz game after dinner. Emily volunteered at the Ashford--Alzheimer's place near our home in the morning so she missed 7 Peaks. Taran joined us for the Owlz game since he worked until dinner.
The Owlz were winning until the 9th inning when the Chuckers tied it up and then won in the 10th!
Bummer but we still had a really fun day. Tim's plan panned out--we weren't sure it was going to work! (the black and white photo Izak took--he learned this at his Photography Merit Badge Class, too bad I wasn't paying attention).

Friday I was up checking my emails in the morning and I saw that Old Navy sent me an email that they had $10 jeans for kids Fri-Sun. So I got the kids up and going so we could be there by 10 AM. Timo stayed home and slept but I did let him know I was leaving. I let them each pick a shirt, jeans and shoes. We didn't get everything at Old Navy but a bit. Then we had time to go to Target and Emily, Izak and Micah got their shoes there. Then we headed out to Aunt Shellie's for Cousin Camp. The kids have enjoyed this time with their cousins. I ran around checking school clothes for Timo and Taran. I actually had bought some things for Taran earlier in the summer so he is almost done. I did get some dishes for him to take to college, I found a great deal at Ross less than buying each piece at the dollar store. And Timo can use them if Taran and his roommates don't break them! I also visited my parents for about an hour after running around and getting gas at Costco. When we got home Timo and I ordered his school shoes--he is the most picky of my kids about his clothes yet he won't go shopping so it's usually all online or me buying stuff and him saying yeah or nay! That night we got the kids to do their Saturday chores before watching a movie.

Saturday we had planned to go on the hike we had postponed twice! After looking over the info we found about it Tim and I decided that we should go ourselves and survey the hike as well as find it! So we were trying for Stewart Falls from Sundance which we had heard was super easy. So we headed there. Tim asked the guy at the lift if the trail we saw went to Stewart Falls and he said that they encourage people to take the lift up and hike over and then hike down. So we decided that hike was out as well, until we can go with someone who has gone that way. So we went to Big Springs up South Fork.

We actually didn't make it all the way up to the Springs because we had wasted soooo much time. Plus having a four year old who is a great hiker but not fast slowed us down. So we turned around at noon and started back--maybe next time! I knew about this hike because I had gone snowshoeing there with my scouts--one of the dads told us about it.

It was nice despite all that we went through to get there! Tim dropped me off at my mom's on his way home because she was taking me out to lunch for my birthday--I know almost a month late but like I mind! We went to a sandwich place which was really yummy. Then we drove out to my sister's and got her some supplies and dropped them off at her house since she was returning from her big trip to Switzerland that night. THat night Micah had friends over for games and a movie: Three Amigos. One dad dropped off pizza for the party and we provided floats and candy. They had a lot of fun. I couldn't take any pictures because Timo had the van and my camera was in it. Timo went to the Highland City Fling/Celebration with friends and had a lot of fun. Taran had gone to the WARP Tour with his cousin Erika in Salt Lake, they also had a lot of fun.

One thing about summer is that my kids think everyday is Saturday and every night is Friday night--we always need to be doing something fun and staying up late! It has been challenging to get them to bed at decent hours! We have had a lot of fun though playing games and watching movies along with all the other stuff!

Today was a great Sabbath. Church was uplifting as usual and people had some nice things to say about Taran and Timo that made me feel like Tim and I have done alright in raising them. We went to my parents after dinner and Taran's awesome devotional--I think he will be a great missionary. Teresa showed us a slide show of the photos of her trip. It seems like a dream, it has been her dream for over 20 years. It was fun to be with family and enjoy yummy dessert too!

Really there things going on around us that can make us discouraged. Lots of unfortunate things and terrible things. When you realize that there is a supreme being, a Father in Heaven and He is allowing others to make their own choices and will compensate those who are victims of these difficult things and that through His son, Jesus Christ, we can find peace and healing if we want to. What a great blessing this is in my life. I can enjoy the blessings of health and a happy family for one more day and if it changes He can help me through it. I would be sacred to death of life without this understanding. I hope you know that you are loved and that He and His Son are there for you. It's just that you need to ask for their help, they are waiting to bless and help but we need to turn to them. Have a wonderful week!